ACM-W Connections — December 2018

Welcome from the ACM-W Chair

It’s the most wonderful time of the year…or so a popular holiday song claims.  It certainly is one of the busiest!  Like many of you, I look forward to a few weeks to pull back and relax with family and friends. While many of the projects of ACM-W will be less active in the next month, there are two big efforts that you will want to participate in if you haven’t already done so.

Final Deadline for Gender Gap Survey!

The survey project portion of A Global Approach to the Gender Gap in Mathematical, Computing, and Natural Sciences ( will end on December 31st.  The following summarizes the status of the project as of the end of November:

  • Overall response goal: 45,000 scientists worldwide
  • Responses as ofNovember 30th: 26,225
  • Responses from thecomputing community: 2876 (81% ofestablished target)

The survey takes approximately 15 minutes to complete and can be accessed in one of seven languages, by visiting Participation is not limited by gender and all undergraduate students, graduate students and professionals who have worked in computing are encouraged to respond. Please ask your colleagues and peers to help us make the final push toward the target of 3557 respondents from our discipline. 

Grad Cohort Funding Applications Being Accepted

ACM-W will once again sponsor teams of 2-3 people from countries outside of North America to attend the CRA-W Grad Cohort workshop in hopes that this successful program replicates in areas around the world.  Already we have seen events in India (7/2018) and Spain (10/2018) and another event is planned in Ireland early next year (2/2019).  This year’s workshop will be held April 12-13, 2019 in Chicago, IL. We invite applications to attend now through January 15, 2019.  You can find the form to apply at

Other ACM-W News

Also appearing in this month’s newsletter:

  • The Rocky Mountain Celebration of Women in Computing was held for the 6th time in November.  Read all about thislongstanding, successful event.
  • The Student Chapters project kicks off another Facebookcontest.
  • ACM-W India reports on the Grace Hopper Celebration ofIndia, which was held November 14-16 in Bangalore.

Thanks for standing with us as we work to fulfill our mission.

Jodi Tims
ACM-W Chair

News from ACM-W Celebrations

Rocky Mountain Celebration of Women in ComputingConference (RMCWiC)

TheSixth Rocky Mountain Celebration of Women in Computing Conference was held November 1-2, 2018, at the Denver Sheraton West hotel in Lakewood, Colorado. There was an amazing support from 25 academic, industry, and non-profit sponsors, raising $57,500. The conference drew 356 participants right from highschool students, teachers, academic and professionals.

The conference kicked off Thursday November 1, 2018, at 3:30p with two workshops, a panel, and three activities. The “Accessible Computer Science Education Workshop” was led bystudents from the

University of Wyoming, the workshop “Creating a Resume that Speaks to the Company You Want!” was led by FAST Enterprises, and the panel “Diverse Pathways to Technology: WhatCareers in Tech Look Like” hosted a diverse group of women from The Turing School of Software and Design, P2BInvestor, Lockheed Martin, and Amazon. At 4:30p, a second set of workshops were presented – “Intro to Back EndProgramming”, led by The Turing School of Software & Design, “Pitch Perfect: Crafting an Effective Introduction”, led by the University of Denver, and “Want to Ace Your Tech Interview?” led by Google.

RMCWiC 2018

At 5:30p, the Poster Session, Demos, Networking, and Reception kicked off with 6 student presenters discussing their research, along with the LSG Innovations demo “Shadow Lens Demonstration: Tactical Multi-INT Sensor Fusion”. At 6:30p, a buffet dinner was served, during which sponsors were recognized and a slide show featuring Notable Women in Computing was presented while students dined.

The evening keynote featured a 20-minute documentary, “The Computers: The Remarkable Story of the ENIAC Programmers”, followed by a virtual Q & A session with the filmmaker, Kathy Kleinman. The day closed with a “Getting Started with FreeBSD”Programming Workshop, at 9:00p.

Friday November 2nd started promptly at 8:00 am with a Mentoring Breakfast organized by Cathie Olschanowsky with topics that included career paths in government or military, career paths in academia, career paths in industry, work/life balance, choosing the right career path, gender issues in the workplace, what is computing research?, how can undergrads get involved in research?, developing interview skills, Technical Topics: Information Systems, and Technical Topics: Software Engineering.

At 9:00am, a plenary panel, “My Path to Entrepreneurship” featured Four chief executive officers who shared their story – Andrea Guendelman (, Wallbreakers) served as moderator, with panelists Carol Carter (GlobalMindED), Amelia Coomber (BB&Co), Toi Massey (The JEKL Foundation for Science, Technology, Engineering, Art & Mathematics).

Following a short break, panel discussions and workshops resumed at 10:10am with the workshop “UsingDesign Thinking to balance and bridge CS with your other interests”, led by students and faculty from Colorado State University; the panel “Demystify Your Career” featured Salesforce Employees who shared their personal stories and career journeys, and the workshop “Leading Conversations about Microaggressions, Bias, and Other Nonsense” helped attendees build their capacity to address and respond to bias in their academic environments and to replicate this session within their organizations.

Running in parallel at 10:10am were the Birds of a Feather sessions “Imposter Syndrome”, “Undergraduate Research Challenges for Faculty and Students”, and “Career &Education: When, Where, and Why?”.

Lightning Talks ran before lunch. The lunch keynote began at 12:05p with a talk entitled “Navigating the Death Valleys to Reach the Meadows and Mountaintops”, by entrepreneur Andrea Guendelman, who shared the real life trials and tribulations of running several startups.

At 1:40p, the conference resumed with five Graduate Student Talk sessions, a workshop, and six Birds of a Feather sessions. At 3:45p, the Career Fair and afternoon snacks were served in the City Lights Ballroom, and included 15 companies and six colleges and universities.

The conference closed with the presentation of awards by Elle Boese from the University of Colorado, Boulder. Graduate Student Talk and Poster Winners received a deck of Notable Women in Computing playing cards. Three students earned Honorable Mention and five earned top honors for their Posters and Grad Student Talks. A final raffle was held to give away the remaining books.

If you are interested in organizing a Celebration, please contact Wendy Powley, the Celebrations Chair at

News from ACM-W Student Chapters

Welcome to our new student chapters at Southern Louisiana University, Symbiosis Institute of Computer Studies and Research (SICSR), and Alpha Arts and Science College.

We are launching another Facebook contest this month! Post to our Students Chapters Facebook page about an activity your chapter held this fall and your chapter may win $250. Refer to our Facebook page for details:

GHCI 2018 – The Grace Hopper Celebration of India2018, November14-6, 2018, Bangalore India

The Grace Hopper Celebration of women in computing, India GHCI2018co-sponsored by ACM  is one of theleading event in  Indian technology. Inthis event women technologists gathered at  Bangalore to participate, learn and contribute to celebration thatrepresents excellence and diversity.

GHCI 2018

A half an hour slot on 16th December was allotted to ACM W India Speaker to address GHCI 2018 Scholars. There were three speakers who sharedtheir successful technology related  lifestory with the participants. There were total 120 GHCI scholar participants.

GHCI 2018

Speaker 1: Mrs. Ruchika Mann, Director on Board of American Express and working with American Express from past 18 years did not have any ambition or goal to become so successful. The learning she shared with the attendees was to keep saying ‘yes’. Yes to the opportunities that knock without hesitation. She initially didn’t even wish to opt for Science and instead wished to pursue Arts. Her family stressed her on choosing Science and her career started as Java developer. Soon the curiosity and guts to say ‘Yes’ to balls thrown at her started becoming her stairs of success.

GHCI 2018

Speaker 2: Dr. Kalika Bali has been researcher at Microsoft for Natural Language Processing and Speech synthesis and recognition. She wasn’t much interested in Science and wished to pursue linguistics. Her love for linguistics is what got her a doctorate. A doctorate combined with her analyzing mind and skillful mind landed her at a lot of different places such as London and then at Belgium and also atHewlett-Packard. When you keep your eyes open and love what you do things start falling in place. While doing what she loved she also met her love of life. And she was perfectly able to keep work-life balance.

GHCI 2018

Speaker 3: Dr. MeenakshiD’Souza, IIIT-Bangalore,  discussed that  a couple of years of post-doctoral research, a computing researcher can take up career options in industry or academia. In this interactive session, the speakers discussed about research career options including entry into industry and academic jobs, expectations from these jobs and challenges to stay active in research, based on their experience. The speakers highlighted importance of pursuing fundamental research, a common feature between industry and academic careers.“ She worked in Citi-Bank and quit her job because she was more interested in Academia. She stayed with the company for 8 long years. Alongside she kept working on Academia and taking lectures in Indian Statistical Institute and now she teaches students of IIIT Bangalore.

GHCI 2018

The GHCI 2018 Scholar session  ended with giving mementos to guest speakers and few questions/answers. The question to Mrs. Ruchika was how did she move through her path from Junior Java Developer to extreme high managerial post; to which she answered simply by saying Yes. “You should have what it takes to say Yes and okay I will do it. “The event ended within 45 minutes. After event offline discussion, questions and queries were answered by the experts.

A small meet up of ACM Sponsored Scholars was organized on 16th December during GHCI2018.  ACM-W Councilmember Prof. Heena Timani , Ms. Gungjan Lal and ACM W chapter representatives shared their experiences, learning and various activities they are doing on their campus under ACM Chapter. The ACM sponsored 40 participants which included students and four faculty members. There were representatives from about 15 ACM student chapters from India. All the ACM Chapter participants got opportunities to network with other ACM student chapters representatives.

News from ACM-W Europe

womENcourage 2018

Join us in Rome for womENcourage 2019 September

The blog for womENcourage 2018 is live at